By BOB PALMER
Jefferson aldermen voted 6-0 Thursday to terminate City Administrator Kevin Huckabee effective Sept. 21.
The move included a severance pay package of between four and six months “depending on employment with health insurance.”
►Watch Alderman Shawn Humphrey make the motion regarding Huckabee’s termination and severance package:
The action did not please everyone.
Former Alderman Richard Turner was seen shouting on Polk Street in front of City Hall at Alderman Shawn Humphrey who made the motion to terminate Huckabee.
“That’s my tax money,” Turner screamed, apparently referring to the severance package.
Huckabee commented on his joint agreement with the city.
“The City Council and I mutually reached a unilateral severance agreement. We mutually agreed that separation would be best for both me and the City,” Huckabee told the Jimplecute Friday morning.
He went on to say, “The past 2 ½ years Amy and I have spent in Jefferson have been a wonderful blessing and there have been several great accomplishments involving city finances and infrastructure. There are so many good-hearted people here and we have received an overwhelming amount of support in favor of me continuing as the Jefferson City Administrator. However, the malicious comments and hatefulness by a few have caused a huge disruption in this community and we recognize that it is an unhealthy environment. There is a very good Council in place and the citizens should be proud of their decisions to better this City. I wish the City the best of luck and we will miss all of our supporters.”
Huckabee’s dismissal did end several weeks of controversy that included Huckabee secretly recording Mayor Bubba Haggard in order to file criminal charges and citizens presenting a petition with more than 200 names demanding Huckabee’s ouster.
Former Mayor Carey Heaster had praised Huckabee for securing grants to help the city move forward.
Turner said Huckabee’s accomplishments were “overrated.”
A sexual harassment complaint by former Tourism Director Kelli Schilling also clouded Huckabee’s time in Jefferson.
In other action the council accepted Pecan Way into the city street system and added the route to this year’s paving program.
The motion applied only to Phase 2 of the development and up to the Herrington driveway.
Phase 3 must be brought up to city code before it can be accepted.
The council also heard from Humphrey who spoke as a citizen and presented maps supporting his position on a boundary dispute with a neighbor. Another resident of that area, Tommy Lummas supported Humphrey.
Stephen Wulff during public comment time said the city needed new leadership.
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